Best Lightweight Carry On Luggage With Wheels

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Best for travel on United States domestic flights and a few international airlines

Lipault Paris Originale Plume Spinner 55/20The highest carrying capacity for carry-on bags that are easy to transport comes from small upright rolling suitcases, and the best lightweight carry on luggage with wheels are ideal for packing everything you need for a short trip without having to lug them around on your shoulder. If all your travel possessions for the trip fit into it, there’s no need to check-in anything. You may want a separate laptop bag or purse along with it, as an additional personal item is also allowed on board.

There are a few popular rolling upright carry on bags in this category that don’t make it onto this list for one reason. They weigh 8 pounds or more when empty. These days, some airlines restrict cabin bags not just in dimensions but also in weight. This varies by airline, but it ranges between 16 and 22 lbs, which is quite miserly because that leaves you with 8-14 lbs for your things! That’s why your empty luggage should not weigh more than it needs to. Another advantage is that petite women don’t have to worry about lifting a carry on into an overhead bin. Of course, if the other features appeal to you and you’re a light packer anyway, don’t let this stop you. They could still be very good for other travel like road or train trips or even on flights with a more generous allowance.

Here’s a handy travel resource for baggage limits on various domestic and international airlines.


What to Keep an Eye on When Buying Light Wheeled Carry On Luggage

  • There maybe some carry on bags that weigh 5 pounds or less when empty but not all are very good. Very often they are made from inferior components and materials and won’t last very long. Therefore, we have only considered wheeled carry on bags that are constructed well and can handle more than just one or two trips a year. Even with this in mind we have tried to keep the lower limit for a full-sized carry on bag to around 7 lbs or less when we made our picks.

  • Softsided carry on bags might be constructed from polyester instead of nylon or at least a blend in order to keep the overall weight down. Hardsided carry on bags may be constructed from ABS instead of polycarbonate for the same reason. Both these lighter materials are fine if you’re always going to handle the luggage yourself and take care of it, but they’re less durable and are not ideal if you have to check the bag in. Therefore, it’s best that you get a bag that’s within cabin size weight and dimension limits to avoid it being gate checked. Otherwise, stick with nylon and polycarbonate luggage.

  • When light carry on uprights come with one or more front pockets, the design has to allow for anything heavy, like a laptop or large toiletry bag being placed there, otherwise the bag can tip forward. You don’t want the hassle of trying to pack so that this problem is avoided.

  • Spinner wheels are popular because they make maneuvering easy and reduce the strain on your arm by a lot and are easier to wheel down the aisle in the plane or train. However, they do tend to reduce the height of the body of the carry on, which reduces overall packing capacity. They’re also not great if you have to wheel the bag over carpet or uneven terrain. On the other hand, two wheeled luggage is best if you plan to wheel it outside of airports, offices and hotels, and if you need that extra 1-2″ packing space that the lower chassis provides.

    Keep in mind that some of the following bags are at or just under 22”, which is the maximum height for carry-ons on normal US domestic flights. For smaller aircraft and many international flights, you’ll need to keep the height under 20″, so we’ll give you options there as well.

    If you’re not someone who needs to take lots of things with you on board, then a rolling tote bag may be the best option for you. You can also pair your regular carry on bag with a smaller personal item bag as well.

    Here are the top rated lightweight carry on suitcases for frequent business travel or leisure travel categorized by price.


    Best Wheeled Carry On Luggage Under $100

    it luggage World’s Lightest Los Angeles 21.5 Carry on

    it luggage World's Lightest Los Angeles 21.5 Carry onIT Luggage is a brand known for making super-light luggage and this it luggage World’s Lightest Los Angeles 21.5 Carry on is a good bet from their lines. While some would say that their check in size pieces are not the best for rough handling by baggage handlers, their carry on pieces are perfect for travel on airlines that are very stingy with weight allowances. This 2-wheeled piece uses light but strong components and intelligent design to draw travelers to it.

    • Available in 7 different colors.
    • It measures 21.5″ x 13.5″ x 9″ including the wheels and handles. At 4.85 lbs, it is probably the lightest softside carry-on with wheels you can buy.
    • The high tensile polyester shell is abrasion-resistant durable enough for long term use. The exceptionally lightweight frame is made of tough fibreglass.
    • There are two inline skate wheels that rotate smoothly and work well over cobblestone streets. The design and positioning of the front legs keeps the bag from tipping forward.
    • The extending handle is wide and extends out of the two rear corners of the bag instead of somewhere in the middle, so they don’t protrude into the inside of the bag or hinder packing. This also helps to keep the bag stable as you pull it behind you or push it in front of you. It is not telescopic, as it extends to its full height only and does not lock into place but is not loose enough to slide back down unless you push it in. The foam grip on the handle is also extra wide to provide a comfortable grip.
    • The top carry handle is nicely padded and the one on the side features the same foam grip as on the telescopic handle.
    • The double zipper heads on the main compartment can be locked using your own luggage lock.
    • The exterior front features an easy-access zippered pocket on top and another larger one below that.
    • The interior features two rows of elastic top mesh pockets on the lid. The top row is more shallow and good for packing underwear, while the bottom row is deeper and good for shoes. A pair of elastic compression straps on the other side run the length of the suitcase and are good at keeping more things securely in place.


    • Very light and very easy to move around, particularly for people who often struggle with handling luggage.
    • Will be allowed as carry on for almost all domestic and international flights.
    • Easy to wheel on cobblestone streets.


    • The wide handle won’t allow you to slide another bag’s strap over it.
    • The handle is a bit short for tall people.

    If you’re looking for the absolute lightest but good quality carry on, the IT Luggage Los Angeles is it!


    Delsey Luggage Chatillon 21″ Carry-on Exp. 2 Wheel Trolley

    Delsey Luggage Chatillon 21Another very inexpensive carry on is the Delsey Luggage Chatillon 21″ 2 Wheel Trolley. There’s nothing fancy in its design but it is a good choice from a reliable brand.

    • The Delsey Chatillon 21″ bag measures 20.5″ x 13.5″ x 9.5″ and weighs 4 lbs, 11 oz. It also expands by 2″ in depth by a pull of a zipper.
    • It is made of water repellent and scratch-resistant Dura Tec polyester fabric and features reinforced corners.
    • The front external zippered pocket is padded and can fit a 14″ laptop. A unique easy-access pocket below that is convenient for toiletries, umbrella or chargers. In fact, there’s a removable cable pouch in there as well. This design is intended to keep the base heavier to prevent the bag from falling over so you should pack something heavy in here to make proper use of it.
    • The main compartment of the bag opens via zippers with lockable zipper heads. The inside of the lid features two zippered pockets. The main section has zippered pocket along one long side and a pair of criss-crossing restraining straps.
    • The telescopic handle is sturdy and there’s a top and side grab handle. For lifting into overhead bins, there’s a hard bottom grip handle that doubles as a stand when the bag is standing upright.
    • The 2 skate-type wheels are recessed and adequate for most kinds of trips.


    • Great from US regional flights and international flights as it will fit in most overhead bins and is very light.
    • Inexpensive.


    • The bag may tip over if you pack a laptop in the laptop pocket but don’t counterbalance that with some heavy item in the bottom pocket.
    • The laptop pocket is only thick enough for a tablet or thin 14″ laptop.


    Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds 20″ 4 Wheel Upright

    Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds 20The Kenneth Cole Reaction Out of Bounds 4 Wheel Carry On is one of the best selling pieces of luggage on Amazon and it’s because it is inexpensive but good quality.

    The entire collection of spinner uprights also makes our list of best hardside spinner luggage overall and best lightweight hardside luggage, so we won’t go into details again.

    The carry on weighs 6.25 lbs and measures 21.75” H x 14.5” W x 8.5” D – good for most overhead bins.


    Best Rolling Carry On Luggage for Women Under $200

    Lipault Paris Originale Plume Spinner 55/20

    Lipault Paris Originale Plume Spinner 55/20Lipault spinners are a favorite among female travelers because of their ultralight weight, easy to handle construction and eye catching colors. The 20″ Paris Originale Plume Spinner will stand out in a sea of luggage anywhere.

    • It is available in several different colors like black, duck blue, antique pink, amaranth ruby, saffron yellow, forest green and purple. There’s even a cool print.
    • It is named by its size – Lipault Spinner 55/20, the first number being the height of the spinner in centimeters. It measures 21.6″ x 14.9″ x 9.4″ and weighs 4.9 lbs
    • The water-resistant 100% nylon bag is completely softsided with the walls featuring padding and the bottom has a scrape guard for extra protection when pulling the bags over curbs and stairs.
    • In addition to padded grab handles on the top and side, the telescopic handle features two stop heights for comfort. It recedes into its own zippered pocket so that it’s out of the way during transit.
    • In addition to setting the bags down upright they can be set on their side too, as there are four feet there to keep them from getting dirty or wet.
    • Even the single caster spinner wheels match the color of the bag.
    • The zipper heads can accommodate any standard or TSA-approved luggage lock.
    • The fully lined interior features one long zippered pocket and restraining straps in the main compartment, while the inside of the lid features one large zippered pocket. The front exterior has one large zippered pocket too.


    • This bag is very roomy because of its flexible sides.
    • Will be accepted as carry on even on international and European flights.


    • The flexible sides means that the top of the bag won’t support another bag resting on top of it very easily unless you pack something flat or stiff, like your shoes, right on top.
    • Must be packed full to give it some structure.

    We previously reviewed an earlier version of the carry on, which is still available, but it has been updated to this version and paired with two checked sizes now.


    Travelpro Maxlite 4 Expandable Rollaboard 22 inch Suitcase

    Travelpro Maxlite 4 Expandable Rollaboard 22 inch SuitcaseThis is the most popular piece in its category on Amazon, and there’s little wonder why! There’s a reason why frequent travelers trust flight crews when it comes to luggage choice. Their bags have to take a daily beating, be versatile and enable them to move fast in airports and planes. It’s not easy to find a reliable two wheeled carry on these days but the advantage is that two wheels makes it easier to transport a bag over rough terrain. It also gives you more packing space because the total height is not reduced because of spinner wheels.

    This expandable rolling upright bag by Travelpro is the top rated among affordable lightweight and durable airline carry on luggage.

    • Available in black, grey, merlot red and ocean blue
    • As it measures 21″ x 14″ x 9″ in its normal state, this bag will fit into all domestic and international overhead bins, and for other travel, you can expand it an additional 2 inches. The bottom expands more than the top, so it won’t topple over. At 6 lbs in weight, it is one of the lightest models around.
    • This 100% polyester bag can be spot cleaned and is water and stain resistant.
    • For durability, the frame is a honeycomb system and the construction is of EVA foam. For protection against travel damage, it features a bottom skid guard, wheel crash guards and corner guards. The wheels are inline skate types.
    • The strong telescopic handle extends at two stops, making it comfortable for people of different heights to roll it along. The handle also features grooves for supporting travel totes. A top and side carry handle in neoprene and and bottom handle wedge makes it easy to lift.
    • The inside features a zippered mesh pocket, a full zippered lid flap and tie-down straps with anti-break buckles to keep things organized and secure. The outside has a front pocket for last minute things like newspapers, and a smaller ticket pocket in front of that.


    • Very lightweight – reviewers say it is very easy to lift into an overhead bin.
    • Packs a lot and is always allowed as carry on for domestic and international flights.


    • A few reviews mention that the telescope handle doesn’t extend smoothly.
    • Zippers are not the smoothest.

    So, if you’re looking for the best reliable, value for money bag, this one is it!


    eBags Fortis 22″ Hardside Spinner Carry-On

    eBags Fortis 22In just a year this hardside collection from eBags has garnered mostly rave reviews. If you’re looking for a good value hardside spinner carry on meant mostly for US domestic flights and train or car travel, then the eBags Fortis 22″ Carry-On is a good buy. What makes this so good is that eBags has focused on quality materials for the highest stress points in luggage – the shell, wheels and zippers, while not compromising on design.

    • Available in black, purple and red.
    • It measures 22″ x 14″ x 9″ and will fit into all domestic flight overhead bins. Check beforehand which international carriers will allow these dimensions. It also expands another 1.5 inches in depth by simply releasing the expansion zipper all around. At 6 lbs 7 oz in weight, it is one of the lightest hardside carry on bags around.
    • The Bayer Makrolon polycarbonate shell makes it one of the most durable hardside pieces to buy. The glossy finish over a raised rib design gives it a sleek look but hides inevitable abrasions and scratches over time.
    • The wheels are silent and smooth rolling Hinomoto double spinner casters and are partly recessed so as to give you maximum case height without going over size restrictions. There are 4 “feet on one side if you need to set the bag down on its side.
    • The strong telescopic handle is fully recessed and extends to three height positions, making it comfortable for people of different heights to roll it along. The top and side carry handles sit flush with the case.
    • The self-healing coil zippers can be locked with your own luggage lock, or you can use the TSA-approved integrated 3-dial combination lock into which the zipper heads are inserted to sit flush with the case.
    • The inside features a full sized zippered mesh divider to separate the lid section from the main section. Tie-down straps with extra give keep things secure in the main section and a small zippered mesh pocket attached to one side is for small items.
    • The self-healing coil zippers can be locked with your own luggage lock, or you can use the TSA-approved integrated 3-dial combination lock into which the zipper heads are inserted to sit flush with the case.


    • Very lightweight yet durable enough to handle rough baggage handling and terrain.
    • Packs a lot.


    • Basic organizational features inside.
    • No exterior pocket.

    If you’re looking for a light, durable, roomy and easy to manoeuvre hard shell carry on and don’t care about fancy pockets and compartments, this is the one to get!


    Best Mid-priced Carry On Luggage

    Osprey Ozone 22″/46L Wheeled Luggage

    Osprey Ozone 22Looking for a carry-on that’s good for leisure and adventure travel? The Ozone 22″/46L Wheeled Luggage from Osprey fits the bill. Not too rugged looking, a style savvy person could easily use this for versatility. Osprey’s expertise in durable luggage for adventure travel is in full view with this bag.

    This monopole handle two-wheeled carry on is part of a very popular collection that we have reviewed separately, so we won’t go into all the details again. What you should know about the 22″ carry on is that it measures 22″ x 14″ x 9″ and weighs just 4 lbs and 6 ozs. It comes with several organizational features without them adding to the overall weight.

    Best Light High-end Carry On Luggage

    Briggs & Riley Kinzie Street International Carry-On Spinner Luggage

    Briggs & Riley Kinzie Street International Carry-On SpinnerIf the cost factor is not as important to you as good quality luggage, then this Briggs & Riley Kinzie Street International Carry-On Spinner is our top choice. This is a new line from the brand but if you know Briggs and Riley then you know that this piece is top choice. Most B&R wheeled carry on bags weigh over 8 pounds, but this Kinzie Street carry on spinner weighs well under.

    Another difference from other lines is that this one has a more urban and updated look to it and is best for city to city travel by modern tech warriors whether going through airports or on sidewalks. You’ll be hard pressed to find a better bag for organizational needs, as the design of the compartments is smart – maximizing space and keeping things in order, while adding the ability to carry business clothes wrinkle-free. You can pack enough for a 2-5 day trip.

    • Available in grey and navy.
    • It measures 21″ x 14.5″ x 9″, including the wheels and handles, and weighs 7.5 lbs.
    • This bag is made of proprietary Tartex™, a high-tech embossed textured and coated fabric that is durable, water resistant and is light. The corners are reinforced to prevent against damage during baggage handling.
    • The top carry handle and accents are of top grain leather and the hardware and zipper pulls are knurled for an industrial and modern aesthetic.
    • There are low profile dual spinner wheels for easy rolling even over carpet, and the telescopic handle is mounted on the outside, leaving you with extra packing space in the main compartment. It locks into 4 different positions so travelers of different heights can wheel it around easily. An integrated fabric handle on the bottom and a low profile one on one side makes lifting easier.
    • The main compartment comes with a lot of organizational storage and is softly lined. The lid features a full zipped compartment and two more smaller zipped mesh pockets lying over that. The other side has a removable compression panel with storage that is secured over your clothes by a pair of compression straps. When detached, it can be used as a separate laundry bag.
    • The exterior features two zipped compartments in the front. One is a quick access pocket with hidden single zipper for storing last minute items like your phone and keys before going through security. The large double zippered pocket behind that is thickly padded and can hold a 15.6″ laptop along with other smaller items. The gusseted sides prevent those items from falling out.
    • A long vertical snap button pocket lies between the poles of the telescopic handle at the back. It can be used to store a rolled up newspaper, water bottle or travel-sized umbrella.


    • Your things are easy to access and organized neatly.
    • The case and hardware are made with quality materials.
    • All Briggs & Riley luggage comes with lifetime warranty that covers everything possible.


    • Not for use over rough terrain.


    Rimowa Salsa Air – Ultralight Cabin Multiwheel

    Rimowa Salsa Air – Ultralight Cabin MultiwheelFor a high end hardside carry on from a luxury luggage brand, choose the Rimowa Salsa Air – Ultralight Cabin Multiwheel. Don’t expect lots of pockets and extra features here. The main draw of this carry on hardsided spinner is its long term durability along with reliability at a low weight.

    • Available in 6 pleasant glossy colors.
    • Including the wheels and handles, it measures 21.7″ x 15.7″ x 7.9″ and weighs 42 lbs.
    • The almost indestructible polycarbonate shell is meant to flex under impact but return to its original shape and form without a dent left.
    • It features a recessed TSA key and combination lock with lie-flat zipper heads to allow TSA agents to open the case for security inspections without damaging the lock or the case.
    • There are 360º double wheels that rotate and roll smoothly over most surfaces and they provide stability too. The telescopic monopole handle is mounted on the outside of the case and extends to two different heights. When fully retracted, the handle grip lies flush against that top of the case. A low profile top handle for lifting the case is the only one available.
    • The design of the packing space inside is pretty simple. It opens clam-style into two equal compartments separated by two mesh dividers that zip up each side to keep everything in place. There is also a zippered pocket in each of the compartments.


    • Highly durable shell.
    • Very low weight.
    • Looks beautiful.


    • Monopole handle not very comfortable to use and makes it difficult to piggyback another smaller bag over it.
    • The wheels are smaller than on the Salsa deluxe spinner model.
    • There’s no side grab handle but this case is so light that it shouldn’t be a problem lifting it overhead with just the top handle.


    So there you have it – our list of the best lightweight carry on luggage with wheels have a few things in common. They’ll allow you to pack the maximum amount of things without you going over carry on limits and they’re high quality and will last long.

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